So, don't tell Nate this, but I can't find the camera. I keep holding him off telling him we'll find it when I shift some stuff around. I've done the shifting and I still can't find it. That being said, the following is the ONLY picture I have from this year's Tree Killin' adventure!
We piled into the Escape and headed to Estacada. We met up with Dad, Mom, Rae Ann, Stella, and Ivy at the Fearless Brewery and had some lunch. Of course, as is so often the case with kids, both Hazel and Piper sensed my hunger so they each decided to give me big chores to do before I could eat. Hazel had need of a diaper change, so we headed to the women's restroom, which was pretty clean (I was surprised, actually) but didn't have a changing table. I laid her out on the floor and did the deed. When I got back to the table, Piper was screeching and I was keenly aware of the owner's policy toward unhappy, crying kids: Take them outside. I grabbed her from Nate and took her back to the Escape to feed her.
By the time she was done eating, I was in a very poopy mood. I was starving. Appetizers had been on the table when I left with Piper and I could imagine that, twenty minutes later, there wasn't anything left. Nate met me outside on my way into the restaurant and he took Piper so I could eat something. Dad and Nate had thoughtfully guarded the chili fries so I could have some (that's one of the best things about Tree Killin' in my mind!).
We scarfed our burgers, onion rings, chicken strips, breakfast wraps, and mac'n'cheese in record time. Mom and Dad had a party to head to later in the day, so we needed to be quick about getting our trees. We headed toward a tree lot called Bobz. For a family who has always climbed the foothills of Mt. Hood to cut down $5 trees, it hurt our senses to have to visit a lot to buy a $20 tree. It turned out (Mom and Dad knew this when we drove there, but it was news to Rae Ann and I) that an old old friend owns Bobz. We did a little chatting and reconnecting and then we found literally the perfect trees. Rae Ann was super happy with her find, Mom and Dad couldn't have done better, I don't think, and Nate and I walked away with a beautiful little tree for Rick and Karen.
The guys at the tree lot loaded the tree onto our car for us. As Nate and I were unbundling ourselves and the girls, the truck took off with the rest of the family in it. Dad shouted bye out the window as the truck rounded the corner and disappeared from view. Nate and I just looked at each other and laughed. We knew they had a timeline that was pretty tight, but it was still funny that they were gone so quickly. Rae Ann texted me a couple minutes later and invited us over to Mom and Dad's for a bit to hang out. We drove straight there. She made some brownies and Mom rocked Piper to sleep. Hazel told Ivy no a million times while they were playing, and the dogs were appropriately harassed by all the small children. It was a good time. It hit about five o'clock and we decided to get the girls home for an early bedtime.
We had a fun Tree Killin' experience, once again! I'm sad to report, though, that we didn't get our yearly picture with our tree. It was super windy and cold at the tree lot. (I'll blame the weather rather than the lost camera. Best not to draw too much attention to that poor camera...)
[P.S. This is Piper after eating about a week ago. I'm posting this here because she's getting huge! I'm so proud of her!]